Summer School – Charles Vandervaart
Charles Vandervaart makes his Soulpepper debut with Turgenev’s A Month in the Country, on stage now.
Hi, my name is Charles Vandervaart and I am 9 years old. I am playing the part of Kolya in A Month in the Country. This is my first performance at Soulpepper and I am so very excited.
I love coming to work. I wasn’t called in too much when school was on, but now that school has ended, I am at the Young Centre every day in rehearsals.
Everyone at Soulpepper is so nice to me. I have had great conversations with them. Just the other day, Mr. Webster (Bill) and I spoke for a very long time, during a break, about science and basketball, two things I love. The cast call me all different names – Prince Cinnamon Boots, Chuck, Charlie, Chaz and Prop. Jeff Lillico, my Russian tutor in the play, likes to throw me around. So, Nancy, the stage manager, told him to put the prop down. That is how I got the nickname Prop. It was really funny.
I love to help Nancy and Janet – the stage managers – clean up and get the rehearsal hall ready for rehearsal.
Mr. Marton, the director, is so nice to me. He calls me his third son. He works really hard with all the actors. He wants them to be their very best. Mr. Marton has taught me about connecting with the other actors in a scene. He also explained how to “spice” up your performance so it is natural. Your actions in a scene are not rehearsed but felt as you do the scene. Every time you perform a scene it will be different. This makes everything natural and real.
The actors sure do eat a lot of fruit when they are doing their scenes.
I have learned so much from Mr. Marton, the other actors and the stage managers. Every day, I learn more new things. I am so lucky to be working with them all and learning how to be a real actor. My dream is to be as good as the other actors one day.